Cal Water has selected Mike Mares to serve as the new District Manager to lead its Bakersfield District. Rudy Valles, who has been the Bakersfield District Manager since 2012, is set to retire in March and is supporting Mares during the transition.
Mares has held numerous roles for California Water Service Group and its subsidiaries since 1992. Most recently, he was the General Manager for Hawaii Water Service (Hawaii Water), a subsidiary serving water and wastewater customers on Maui and Big Island. Mares started his career in Cal Water’s Chico District as an Operation Maintenance Worker and also worked as a General Foreman, Utility Worker, Superintendent of Distribution, and Superintendent of Construction there before becoming Local Manager for Hawaii Water’s Big Island operations.
Mares holds a Bachelor of Science degree in organizational communication from Kaplan University, along with Water Treatment Grade Two and Water Distribution Grade Four certifications from the State Water Resources Control Board.
“Mike has a tremendous amount of operational knowledge in the water and wastewater utility fields, and I am confident that his 25 years of experience will help him manage the Bakersfield District well,” said Valles. “Mike is very hands-on in his approach and is committed to providing our customers with quality, service, and value. I know our community is in very good hands with him.”
Valles, who has worked for Cal Water for the past 30 years, has held various management positions in the Bakersfield District since 1993. Among his many accomplishments during his tenure as District Manager, Valles was instrumental in helping Bakersfield District customers reduce total water consumption during the drought emergency by more than 11 billion gallons from June 2015 to November 2016 (compared to water usage in 2013). In his retirement, he plans on traveling, gardening, biking, and spending time with his family.